Thursday, November 29, 2007


So Amy and I just were at Ike's to get some hot chocolate to celebrate the cooler weather. On our way back we passed Little Poca Cosa, and who was sitting our front you say? Joey Burns and John Covertino! Seriously. This is my second Joey Burns siting in as many months. I could flatter myself and think that he would recognize me and now be scared that I am stalking him, but I am sure that I am not that recognizable. Nothing like a little excitement in the Old Pueblo from time to time.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Thanksgiving, a few days late

This past weekend was pretty relaxing. It is pretty rare that we have days off and can stay at home. This weeknd was a mix of friends, football, and knitting. We had some friends, and friends of friends over on Thanksgiving. We all split up the Turkey Day duties, so it was actaully very manageable. One of my duties was to make the celebratory Thanksgiving Mobile of Death. I fashioned this out of felt and fabric glue. I also busted out my mad embroidery skills. Making an appearance were a bloody cleaver, a dead turkey, a decapitated turkey, a dead onion, a dead sweet potato, a dead loaf of bread, and rounding out the stuffing trio, a dead celery. Steve was a little fearful for his life during the construction of this masterpiece, but the cuteness took the edge off a bit.

We also had some veterinary fun. We should have seen it coming. Whenever I get a bonus from work, an animal goes down. This time it was Rey. We were playing soccer last Sunday and he cracked and twisted his dew claw 180 degrees. On Wednesday Steve took him to the vet, and $200 later, we have a bandaged foot with a very, very stumpy dew claw. To prevent chewing and licking of the bandaids, Rey needs to wear a sock. This is bad because now I want to knit him socks and he will get beat up at the park. Anyway, Exhibit A and B are said evidence of sock covered dew claw.

Other craftiness has taken place, but I will only show a couple of things for now. In September (on my b-day, actually) our neighbors Jeannie and Matt had a baby. They got this lovely parting gift from us. I think that they are Christine's Booties and a hat from Itty Bitty Hats. The yarn is Cascade suoerwash and Louet Gems.

Then we got invited to a U of A basketball games by our friends, Kate and Jeff, who have little preemie Henry. Henry is doing quite well and has grown out of his hat. I got some of the Lout Gems in blue and made him his own little elf hat.

And finally, the baby borats. They have been in the US for about 2 months, and my slow ass finally finished thier toys. Of course, I have not sent them yet. I suck. Anyway, I present a cordoroy brontosaurous from my new (and free thanks to a Bookman's thing that is compllicated...just know it was free) Sew a Dinosaur book. Notice the Neutrogena lip protector for scale. Also, a little bunny from a free pattern form Wee Wonderrfuls, I think.

I'm outie!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


First off, since a lot of you have been asking, Steve is fine after running the Chicago Marathon on Sunday. He finished in just over 3:22. Considering the heat and the problems that others were having, this is an excellent time. True, it is about 30 minutes over what he trained for and would have run if it were normal temperatures, but I am just very, very glad that he came through with no major problems. Steve looked good through the whole race, but he said that after mile 18, things got bad for everyone. He started in the “A” group, which basically means you are one fast individual. The only people before him were the Elite and the Top 100 group. He said EVERYONE was walking at about mile 18/19. He finished looking really good, but had some effects of heat exhaustion and was pretty sick once he sat down outside of gear check. Luckily, my dad saw a cop he knew and we were allowed to get our car right up to where Steve was to load him into the car (a little hairy to have cops stop traffic on Lake Shore Drive so you can get in your car, but whatever works). While we were waiting for the dads to come get us, we saw about 50 ambulances come and go from the medical station. Sirens were constantly going. People were laying everywhere. It looked like a disaster simulation that high schools have for the fire department, but this time it was real. We heard the announcement that the race was shut down about 30 minutes after Steve finished. I think that it was a good call. Despite all of the problems, the Chicago police and fire, as well as suburban ambulance companies that were called in, all did a remarkable job.

Because, thankfully, Steve is doing great (other than puking Gatorade out the window of the car on the way home), here are some pictures.

Katie and Dad waiting for Steve at about mile 3. We already missed him at this point, so we were waiting for the runners to thin so we could cross the street. People were already soaked through their clothes at this point.

Runners on their way to Greek Town.

Steve in Greek Town at about mile 17. He looked great.

Outhouses in Grant Park.

The finish. Looking at him, he looked fine. I only knew that he would be feeling bad because his time dropped significantly from the half-way point.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

This really takes the cake.

You have probably heard me complain about yoga before. I like to go for exercise and stretching reasons, not some sort of spiritual crap. I don't want to learn Sanskrit. I don't want to become vegan (damn cheese haters). I don't want to be inspired to become a fake Buddhist.

Yesterday I knew that I was in trouble the minute I walked in. First, not the regular teacher. I was prepared for the regular teacher's own form of yoga craziness....overly happy, huggy, sings in Sanskrit at the end. It used to make me want to get up, scream, and leave the room. I learned to "breathe through" my anger. No, this teacher was a new form of wacky. We had to all sit facing each other in a big circle because she "loves circular flow." ok. This seemed doable at first until i realized that there would be no privacy when you were literally 2 feet away from the person facing you. I soon realized that this set up gave me a clear view of this doofus three people over who chose not to wear a shirt. This must have been so distracting because it took me about 15 minutes to realize that he was wearing BOXER SHORTS. Who does that? I feel bad for the woman right in front of him because she has to be getting nut sack views the whole time. SO. GROSS.

It went downhill from there. I kept getting distracted. Then we had the sleepy time thing at the end. I much have had bad chi or yang, or some other shit because the teacher insisted that I use an eye pillow. I soon hat itchy eyes and a nose from whatever twigs and berries were in there. An just when I thought I was free to leave, I had to sit though 5 minutes of candle light Sanskrit chanting. LORD! I can't wait for the overly happy teacher to come back.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Where to start?

I sort of got off the whole blogging kick for a while. Surprised? I didn't think so. I guess I will start at the beginning.

What do you get when you put a bunch of Italians in 1920's costumes in the same room? No, not The Godfather Part II. Nani's birthday! My Nani turned 80 (can you believe it?) and of course had to have a blow out party. Granted, this is normal for my family, so really no one questioned a 150 person themed costume party costing thousands of dollars being held at an authentic location. This is why we eloped.

Mom, Katie, Nani, and Me. You can see that 1. Nani does not look remotely near 80 and 2. I strategically used my fabulous blue faux fur wrap to cover my 80 year plus disgusting armpit stains.

oh, and the best was one of my aunts, who shall remain nameless, but is a super crabby appleton. Hopefully there really is Karma...she's due. Ok, so she says to me "I really like your costume the best because it reflects your personality the most. Conservative and plain." Beee-atch. You know what is conservative and plain? Wearing the same black flapper dress that everyone else and their mother (really, that is true in this case, everyone was related)was wearing. At least I stood out in the crowd! How is that conservative? Grrrrrrrr.

Sort of all the grandkids. This is going to be one of those pictures that we all end up hating 5 years from now. I cringe when I look at old family pictures with me in them. I had an abnormally long devo stage. In fact, that seems to happen with all of the kids. Hmmm. Maybe it is genetic.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Just like me, they want to be, cloche to you......

As part of this weekend's endevors, I made a cloche hat. My Nani turned 80 this week and next weekend my family is throwing a Roaring 20's themed birthday party at home in Chicago. I ordered a real vintage dress from ebay (it has armpit stains, ewww. I hand washed it and they didn't come out. I had to change out the water and soap at least 10 times, the water was black almost every time. So gross, but I am wearing it). ANYWAY, I needed a cloche to go with it but I really wasn't into spending any more money, so I decided to make one myself. I had a hell of a time finding directions online, and buying patterns would have been antoher $15. Screw that. I have a winter hat that is a cloche, so I decided to see what I could do....

First I traced the parts of my hat. I figured that to get the right shape, I would need to have four top pieces so I folded the hat into quarters.

Then I made a mock hat out of 60 cents worth of cotton.

It fits!

Then I traced that pieces onto medium weight white felt. I think that this would look good on really heavy felt or darker felt. The white is a little too translucent, but I needed that color for my ensemble.

Sewed it together and added a flower. Viola!

It still needs to be blocked a little. Or ironed. Whatever, it works. However, between the hat and the dress and the blue fake mink that I bought to make a stole, I feel more like Miss Hanagan from Annie than a gatsby girl. Although the though of always having a drink in my hand at this party might not be a bad idea.

I know that only two people read this, but if anyone would be intersted in me making a pdf of my pattern pieces, let me know.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Week Recap

Last week was one busy-ass week. First off was the annual Arizona Hydrological Society conference. Not only was I *lucky* enough to spend all day Wednesday in a water well rehabilitation class, but then I had two additional days of conferencing. Some of it was good. Other parts made me want to kill myself. The food kicked ass. The comedy troupe at lunch on Friday, not so much. Seriously, who thinks comedy troops are a good idea? I also realized that most people in my field are dorks. Too bad. There were a few normal people, but the were all younger. Maybe there is hope for us all yet. Then again, I would rather have a dork who has nothing better to do spend their time on figuring out our water crisis in the southwest. God knows I would get distracted by knitting or something shiny. Anyway, The conference was at the Westin La Paloma. We used to live up there before buying the house. I had forgotten how pretty Tucson can be when you don't live amongst the thugs and car filled lawns like we do.

Sunday was the baby shower for Kali and Shawn. I was a little nervous because scheduling conflicts only really allowed us to plan the night before, and I guess some during the conference during breaks. Anyway, it went off without a hitch. Kali looks adorable pregnant. I think she now weighs like 10 pounds or something. Of coure I have no pictures of people, but I do have pictures of knitting! Baby Hardeman, aka Baby K, aka Wayne Bo will be sporting this little number come winter.

Pattern: Basic hat and a sweater pattern on Jimmy Beans that I can't remember the name of rihg now.
Yarn: Crap. Blanking on that too. I think it is All Seasons Cotton.
Needles: Again, I suck. 6's?
Time: You guessed it! No idea. I wasn't keeping track because I couldn't post it right away for secrecy purposes. I think that the sweater took 3 or 4 nights. The hat took 2 nights.
Comments: I can barely remeber what I did to make this sweater, let alone comment on it. I do know that I made the arms a few rows wider because I hear that it can be hard to get baby hands through things.

I also made Nautilus from Knitty with the leftover yarn. This was a pretty quick knit. Maybe a couple of nights. I would like to make it bigger next time and maybe with safety eyes instead of gluing felt. Yes, I know he is sideways. I didn't mess wiht things directly after importing, and now I can't rotate it and get it to save that way. Stupid Mac. That is also why the formatting is weird on these posts. Steve says it is the browser. He is wrong.

After all that action, you would think that we would be sleeping in on Monday. Au contrair mon frere. Steve had a race at 6:30 AM. A M! We got up at 4:30 and headed out to Saguaro East. I guess it is the only race in a national park. The could be lying, but I am too lazy to look it up. Anyway, it was 8 miles and Steve said it was the hardest race he has ever run. He did awesome, though. He finished in 50:13 and was 14th overall, 3rd in his age group. Good practice for the marathon next month. Here he is running right before the finish. Those old dudes are just walking. They didn't beat him or anything.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Austin Part 2 and other musings

Better late than never.

So, as part of “Austin Part 2,” here are some of the things that I got in my former cit-tay. Fabric and yarn. Are you surprised? I also got a shirt from Parts and Labor, but I forgot to take a picture.

The fabric and the Amy Butler Weekender Bag pattern are from Craft-o-rama. Craft-o-rama is south of South Congress, down by St. Ed’s. It is a cute store with a small selection of fabric. All of it is good though. They have classes and sewing machines set up that you can rent to use in house by the hour. The flowery fabric is Amy Butler. The other one is by the guy who rips off Amy Butler, but I can’t remember his name. They are produced by the same company.

We also went to Hill County Weavers. I was completely overwhelmed, and not just because it is the first time that I have been in a decent yarn shop in a while. The prices have gone up a ton in the past two years. My friends were saying that it really has been in the last few months. Really frustrating. Anyway, between confusion and principal, I only came out with three skeins of yarn. One for me, one to make my mom something with since she always gets gypped on the knitting end, and one to make baby things for my neighbor who is due in October.

Speaking of Austin, while I was there I missed the one year birthday party of my coworker/friend Kevin’s daughter Maddie. So, being the retard that I am, I decided to make her a present.

Pattern: Dinosaur by Jennifer Thurston
Yarn: Leftover Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere from the Pea Pod sweater (yay!)
Needles: Size 5 circular, but it is knitted flat and seamed
Time: Started 8/25 finished 8/26
Thoughts: LOVED this pattern. It is so cute that I want to make one for myself. TO make it a dinosaur for a girl, I added a skirt from scraps of cotton yarn I had. The skirt took longer than the dino. I, of course, was thrilled this morning to give this to Kevin. He, of course, was gracious but didn’t seem so thrilled. CRAP.

Speaking of Jurassic, we also tackled the weeds in the yard this weekend. That took FOREVER, but things are looking up. Also bought a couple of ponytail palms for some pots in the front of the house. Things are shaping up. Now all we need is for our new window to finally come in. Drats.

In other knitting news, I have made some cute things for the baby shower that is taking place this weekend. I will have to wait to share until Sunday night. I also am thinking of going to the local Stitch and Bitch tomorrow. A couple of weeks ago Steve and I (well, more me dragging Steve with) went to the local café where they meet to scope them out first. Bad, I know, but I wanted to make sure that the people at least looked normal before I started investing time and guilt into another group. Everything checked out, but we were at a distance.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Austin Part 1

My trip to Austin this weekend was awesome and way too short. Everything has changed but still is the same.

Friday night I met all of the Weston people for Happy Hour. Michell was nice enough to organize the whole thing. I can't believe how many people came. Pretty much everyone I worked with, including bosses. My friend Marita couldn't make it becasue she was in chicago. Another guy, who shall remain nameless but who's name rhymes with nipple, didn't come because he says that I hate him. Honestly, I used to, but now I don't care. People say he is ok now. Who am I to judge? Although, that really doesn't stop me. Maybe I should still hate him to keep balance in the universe.

Anyway, the rest of the weekend I spent with Sarah, her husband Andy, and Buddy the cat. We had an excellent time. Lots of yarn, fabric, food, baby things (Sarah is pregnant with a Kraut), talking, talking, talking. I'll share my wares later, but here are some pictures. I forgot to bring my camera into happy hour, so very unfortunately, I have no pictures from there. I do however have a picture of Sarah and Andy's awesome living room. Their house is so incredibly comfortable and interesting.

Buddy being non co-operative for his photo shoot. He likes to lick the hair off of his hindquarters, but I love him anywy.

Breakfast with the ladies. There were only three of us, so we had to take turns with the pictures. I love Sarah and Dana, but I hate how skinny they are. I always look like a fat lard next to them. Sarah is PREGNANT and she still weighs less than me. Anyway, Sarah and Dana.

Me and Sarah.

Me and Dana.


Friday, August 10, 2007

Ants in my Plants

Well, the assholes are back. Two nights ago we went out to walk Rey and saw this along our front doorway. Those are all ants. Eating our pyracanthus.

We have this cedar pellet stuff that is supposed to be a natural bug repellant. Steve dumped somehwere between a ton and a shitload of the cedar stuff on the ant hole. They hated it. Then they made new holes on the outside of the cedar pellets. Sneaky bastards. This isn't over yet.

At least I will get a reprieve this weekend because I am going to Austin. I am a little nervous. I think that I will hate Tucson even more when I get back. At least it is a dry heat here. That is sarcasim, for those of you who can't recognize it. Anyway, I will get to see my friends and will finally get to give Sarah the baby present I made. Sarah, if you want to be suprised 12 hours from now, don't look.

Pattern: Pea Pod Baby Sweater fom Interweave Knits. It is in one of the magazines, but it is also online in the free patterns section.
Yarn: Debbis Bliss Cotton Cashmere - 4 balls
Needles: #6 Addi Turbo circulars and #6 Clover Bamboo DPNs
Date Started: July 27, 2007 ?
Date Finished: August 7, 2007
Comments: Great pattern. Very cute. I can see making many more of these. I lucked out, too, because I got the yarn called for in the patern on sale at WEBS. I didn't swatch because I was using the yarn called for, and seriously, it is for a baby.

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Loads and Loads

I have been crazy busy with work and with knitting. I have been working on baby things for friends, so i will have to only show bits and pieces until i give them their gifts. I have really enjoyed knitting again. I think it is because baby stuff goes quickly, so you get almost instant gratification. It has also made me want to make some things for myself again. I'll just have to work on affording the yarn first.

Before I get to all that this week, I need to catch up a bit. First off, our trip home. I had a good time with my family. Steve goes to his parent's house, and me to mine, so I don't really get to see him much when we are home, even though we are only about 15 minutes away from each other. Weird, I know. Anyway, while I was home, me, dad, Lorie, and Katie went downtown to try to find a brick that my dad bought for our family at the new police memorial. We looked and looked for over an hour. Couldn't find it.

When we got home, dad looked at the letter, and apparently his brick was in Phase II. Ugh. At least it was nice to be downtown, even if it meant having to see Soldier Field up close. So. Ugly. You deserve to be taking off the historical register, you ugly-ass building, you!

In between reading Harry Potter (which was awesome by the way), I was also able to hang out with my nephew, Jake. He has to be the absolute cutest kid in the world. He is very excited to finally be potty trained. So excited, in fact, that he ripped off his pants as soon as he got in the house. Here are the only pictures I can show that don't involve Elmo undies.

And here in Tucson the monsoon is finally in full swing. Headaches and flooding abound. Even our backyard isn't safe. I understand the whole the-streets-are-the-wash-and-drain-to-the-rivers thing, but come on. We can't have storm drains to do that? This is why engineers are lame. If you let a geologist design the city, it would be much better.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Things I could have said

I could have said how we had a nice time being at home for a few days last weekend. I could have said that we has some incredible rain the past few days and that I got stranded 2 blocks away from my home with no way to cross the water. I could have said that we got a new Dyson canister vacuum and that is completely awesome.


I am too tired and pissed off to say anything other that FUCK TUCSON. Last night at midnight some asshole threw a rock through our front picture window. They did the same thing to our neighbors across the park last Monday night. I am so glad that we spend all of our time working just to pay insurance deductibles. Good thing we have a new Dyson to clean up the glass.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Worky, worky busy bee

Again, so busy that I can't even function by the end of the day. In fact, this whole post might not make any sense. I have had to do work yesterday and today so that I can take Friday off to go home for a few days. It sucks ass that I only have 2 weeks vacation. I need to move to Europe. Not only would I get more vacation and free health care, but I can be as crabby as I want and it would be cool because I was European.

Anyway, in between crabbiness, we made our way up to Mt. Lemmon on the 4th. We thought it would be cooler up there, and although it was, it was still 90 degrees. We took about a 1/2 mile "hike" and Rey was done for. He laid in the parking lot with his travel bowl of water between his front paws and wouldn't move. On the whole ride home he had his upper half of his body wedged between the front seats with his face about 5 inches from the air conditioning vents. Poor guy.

Because it was so hot, we just ended up eating lunch and taking a nap. At least the breeze was still cool.

Our view during the nap:

Me and my boy:

Oh, and this week I got a bunch of yarn to begin the 1,0000,00000,0,00,0,0,0,0,0 baby things I have to make in the next month or two. This is yarn enough for three of them.